When all hell was let loose across the community, just four days before the Festival, I was already in London, and in the right place.
I had been tuning in to the unfoldments at the house of Adela Bach since first I arrived and my amusement at the situation had grown to the degree that it breached the threshold and went to fascination.
It had been a long time indeed since I had been thus fascinated.
It was enlivening.
Chaos has a habit of being exactly that, and to be entirely truthful, I had missed a little chaos that was not strictly of my own making.
Few and rare the occasions! But here was not just chaos, but extreme chaos, and extreme the repercussions. I decided to make the chaos worse, and put in an appearance.
That idea made me chuckle.
I have often thought that to be a Segar is a silent invitation to create chaos in a system that would otherwise be so stable, there would be no evolution at all; and then again, I thought that the kind of chaos we create is built right into the system, and therefore a part of it, and therefore no true chaos at all.
But here, at Adela Bach’s house, there was randomness that had run out of control, and now the Cardor were spiralling in red and gold, tying themselves in knots undoubtedly and taking their time to consult all and every aspect of the Covenant in every combination. I laughed to myself. It might well take a couple of decades before they finally came to a decision, a conclusion and when they did, it would most likely end up being a minute fine tuning of two or three sub paragraphs of the lower Covenant.
In the meantime, the community was in uproar and Adela’s young Docem was ready to tear himself to pieces and put an end to the entire line, once and for all.
I had to chuckle again.
He had been Docem for one single day, and had already the two worst crimes that could possibly be committed to his name – a rogue semi-conversion, and the extinction of one of his Arada. This must surely be a record! It was just as well that Adela had taken the opportunity to escape into Ferata, for the shame would have been certain to put an end to her as well.
I remember Adela well. I remember her tastes with some fondness; she had been Arada in the house where I concluded my Cestra service and had significantly contributed to my recovery following my master’s ascendance.
I felt a sense of kinship with her house although she wasn’t of my line, and I decided to make an appearance, meet this young Docem who used to be her consort. It should be interesting, and an unusual opportunity to study a young one in such a state of shame and public dissolution.
I smiled to myself, tuned into the community, focussed on the house that lay at the very center of the storm of disturbance and disgust, and phased myself into what once had been the house of Adela Bach.
I chose to remain stepped off to observe the situation for a time.
This house, if you can even call it by this honoured designation, this house doesn’t have anyone at all who has the ability to perceive at this level, even if they paid attention; as it is, they have shut down and created a safety field of exclusion around themselves, so they no longer have to hear the cries of shame and disgust, of sorrow and of disbelief that are resonating around the community like so many bells of doom will toll.
I find them all together, clinging to each other and wailing all as one in one of the upstairs bedrooms of the London townhouse that used to belong to Adela.
I hover in a corner of the ceiling and observe them with rising delight and fascination.
What a group! Two wailing infant Cestra girls, hardly off their Arada nests. One Docem so young, he might as well be hardly more than a fledgling Cestra himself, absolutely at sea. And the semi-conversion, a crazy half human who committed the unthinkable crime of crimes and killed an Arada on this day.
Even I am having trouble with that concept, and even though I don’t particularly feel a sense of responsibility or caretaking any longer, having long outgrown my own Docem stage, I still remember what it was like to care for the beautiful dreaming ones, and I decide to check on the surviving Arada.
They are in a sorry state, lost, confused and in great pain; it is absolutely appalling and I am beginning to get angry at the young Docem for leaving these innocents in such a state.
That in and of itself is a delight to me; I haven’t felt anything even approaching anger in many centuries and it is good to know that the ability is still alive and wasn’t lost just simply because it was never needed, never used for such a long time.
I had quite forgotten how empowering a charge it is that bursts forth and sweeps away so many detailed considerations in preference; and so it is that I attend to the Arada with a will, feed them powerfully and dream them deeply, far more deeply than would have been at the disposal of a Docem; they will be safe now and until some form of sensible arrangement for their future unfoldments can be found. These Arada have been severely damaged and that is inconceivable. This should never have happened at all.
At least now the Docem has pulled himself together enough from his self pitying spirals to have noticed my presence in the house and my interventions with what should have been his responsibilities, his Arada; through him, the others become aware of me as well and I find a distaste as I am being touched by the monstrosity, the murderer. I reject his presence absolutely and slap him back; this causes the entire group to fall back as one and recede into a stunned silence.
I am still angry and I leave it be that way as I manifest explosively into their presence.
I shift into the room where the perpetrators of this – unknowable array of crimes, indeed! – are gathered like lightning will strike, come rushing in through the dimensions so fast and hard, into full out manifestation that it causes the very air in the room to become a storm of displacement, and their systems flail and bend in agony of nearly being torn apart.
Far away in the community, there is a satisfaction at their pain; an undertone of applause at my actions mixed in with more disbelief and shock at my own transgression of the Covenant but this is quite overwhelmed by a noticeable desire that I should cause them more pain still, that I should punish them for what they did to the Arada, to the Arada’s many years and many lives, and all that was so heedlessly destroyed and taken in an instant, from all of us, indeed.
This antagonism that has never been in all the times the oldest now amongst us can remember resonates and feeds right back upon itself; shockwaves upon shockwaves travel back and forth, and with some interest I become aware that I myself am at the center of this storm, and that from here, I hold leverage over its unfoldments.
That is fascinating, indeed.
I side step into timelessness and consider the issues at hand.
I have breached the Covenant by becoming involved in the affairs of a house that isn’t even of my line. Theoretically, I can be here, but only to observe and interact in a strictly limited fashion; to take a direct hand in the basic running of the house is unheard of. This is however exactly what I did when, moved by my state of appalment and anger as I was, I took the decision to come to the suffering Arada’s aid and act in place of Docem to stabilise their situation.
Further, I have taken action designed to inflict injury on the remaining members of this house; this is indeed a breach of the first law, and far more serious.
So that is what true chaos actually is, what it feels like.
This is what it is to be outside the Covenant.
I swirl for a moment and must take time to stabilise before I can go on to consider my next course of action.
This is the question – shall I return to the safety and beauty of the Covenant, or shall I remain outside of it? It is true that until this very moment, it had never occurred to me to leave the Covenant. I had played games and amused myself in many different ways, but I had never transgressed against the central tenements of the Covenant and it is inconceivable that I should have been so easily aroused as to have done this, on this day.
It is inconceivable and yet it happened; and this is frightening.
Is this all that lies between us and anarchy? One thought? One feeling? One occurrence? Is that all it takes to make a hundred thousand years of civilisation and co-operation simply disappear as though it had never been? And as I consider these issues and look to all the knowledge and understanding, my evidence and experience, it comes to me that this very question is indeed what heralds the beginning of my transformation from Segar, The One Who Walks Alone, to Cardor, The Lawmaker.
I could never truly understand what that was about, or why one should ever want to go to the place they went, and do the things they did, whatever those things might be; I was happy to explore the worlds and to be drawn from one fascination to the next, enjoying myself tremendously and being quite incapable of even understanding why this extraordinary state of freedom should ever end at all.
Here it is.
I become unsteady for a moment and phase this way and that in timelessness, and as I do, I understand the Covenant and our ways of being in a different way, from a different perspective.
Perhaps it is impossible to know a thing unless you are outside of it as well? I have stepped outside the Covenant, and now, it is up to me what I should choose. In breaking the first law, I broke them all and now, they are all broken; I acted in anger and in vengeance and inflicted pain on these which are but children and should have been in my compassion, just the same as the Arada they had so bitterly neglected and then put at such risk, with that most terrible of consequences in return.
But I acted as I did, and now I am here, in a wilderness that is entirely unexplored, and here and now, there is another state of being that is threatening to overcome me – for the first time in two millennia, I am afraid.
I am afraid of the vastness of the territory outside the Covenant.
And yet, and yet … As I look and see, as I tentatively sense and then explore, this wilderness is beautiful. It is vibrant, it is alive in a whole new way, in a different way.
It is violent, and it is powerful.
Most of all, it is calling to strands within me that I never even once suspected that they should be there at all – it is as though there is a part of me awakening from a long and frozen slumber, something raising, something rising, a power and an ancient strength, the very talents and abilities I need to not just enter into this new world outside the Covenant, but there to thrive, and to survive.
I stand of the threshold of my own becoming and I am in awe.
I am in awe of this new world, and I am in awe of me.
I turn to look upon myself and what I see is not what once I thought I knew.
It is entirely other than.
It is a being that I do not recognise, nor have the two millennia of existence leading up until this moment functioned to prepare me for this meeting.
I understand that right here, right now, is the threshold to the next level.
I understand the Covenant, and I understand the choices that lie before me.
But what I don’t yet know is how this understanding will be guiding all my actions and all the unfoldments that now rest upon the actions and decisions I will take within the next few moments, nor what result and repercussion will then follow in their trailing wakes.
Sadness I take a moment to stabilise myself in timelessness, gather myself as if I was arranging a new cloak and straightening a crown upon my head that never have I known or worn before, yet all of that is me, the new me, the one I do not know as yet and who will only then unveil himself to me through my own deeds and actions.
Then I phase back into the streamings of unfoldment, subtly and gently, and so I am there exactly where I was when I first arrived, and the noise and repercussions on all the levels and the layers of my breach of the First Law are a veritable storm.
I stand cleanly in the center of the chaos of my own making and it enlivens me, delights me in a way that I could never have perceived or known before.
I raise a single hand and take command of the storm.
It comes to me, flows to me and finds an exit point in me; it flows into my structure and it is a union of a truly different kind and still, it is a union – the storm flows into me and in return, I give myself to where it once had been, and what I give is silence, safety, reflection, peace.
When the last of the storm has been consumed within me, I am entirely different yet again and the community is silent, reverent, white.
I adjust my perceptions and the four here in this room are also finally stilled to reverence and awe; all are on their knees, entirely tuned to me, wide open and yet, the pain of their transgressions is still with them, overwhelming, held at bay just for the moment by my actions and my choices.
I tune more closely to them and I feel a different rising; a soft yet cruel and shattering sensation and I know that I am sad.
“I am Gaius Decius Levinius, Segar Ta Cardor,” I tell them so that their distinctive layers may begin to now align and come into a harmony that their existence needs so desperately at this time.
“I am here as part of my unfoldment and I am here to aid in yours.” There is a tremendous sense of relief and instant gratitude from the three young ones who as one, attempt to flow to me for safety and guidance. I hold them at bay and at a respectful distance, for I am not their Docem nor will I act in that capacity; that is not what is required here.
The fourth, the other, he is different.
I focus on him and to my surprise, I now no longer think of him as a monstrosity.
I understand! He was born outside the Covenant, he is of that wild place where all that splendour and that fearful beauty lies and that is a part of me the same; and what I found so alien and so distasteful when first I touched the nature of his extraordinary being was exactly that – he is touched by the beautiful wild, is its child and in that way, not one of us.
We were all born to the Covenant and have to find out way through oh! so many different and gentle learnings and unfoldments to a place where we can even face the Wild without it tearing us apart – but he, he is born that way, for him, the Wild is father, mother and his Docem, too.
The concept renders me speechless.
The reality of the concept, a fully still material man who took the life of an Arada just like that, without the first of guidance, or instruction, simply because he could and it was there, is even more amazing still.
What should I say or do with one like that? I cannot know that, and it is there, the Covenant returns to me.
When it does, such sadness falls upon me that I nearly swirl and lose cohesion – the Covenant is such a beautiful thing, such a wondrous thing, and it does not lose any of its glory or its power, within, or without.
There are undoubtedly unfoldments in the Beautiful Wild.
I cannot know what these might be, and it is quite enough that I should know there must be. And more than that, there is the love.
It is a different love than I have come to know and understand, but love it is; and somewhere I suspect it is a greater kind of love in every way and so it is that I become aware that I was wrong – I am not outside the Covenant at all, but where I went is that I went outside of what I held the Covenant to be! When I understand that, it is as though the world is coming back to me, and all and everything then falls into its rightful place, its rightful dance and all the sadness is now gone, and I can look upon the man with clarity and make my pledge that I should be his guardian and support him in his own unfoldments, wild, though they may be.